The University of Texas El Paso basketball team is in the headlines, but for all the wrong reasons. A school official announced on Tuesday that three players on the men’s basketball team had been kicked off the team for betting on at least on sporting event. The three are not enrolled any longer at the university.
Officials said it does not appear as though the players for UTEP bet on their own games or participated in any way in point shaving to influence outcomes of their games for bettors. The university says they do not suspect any other player on the team was involved in gambling.
The three players involved are Jalen Ragland, Justin Crosgile and McKenzie Moore.
Moore, who was a transfer from junior college, had an average of 13 points and over 4 rebounds per game. Both Ragland and Crosgile played less than Moore did.
Tim Floyd the team’s head coach said he learned of the gambling for a tip, saying his 22 years living in El Paso means he knows many people. When he learned of the situation, he immediately contacted Bob Stull the athletic director.
The FBI was also contacted after being contacted by the city of El Paso police department. The FBI later confirmed that in fact they were conducting an ongoing investigation into the situation. The NCAA would not comment on the situation at UTEP.
Floyd has coached the Miners for the past three seasons and is amidst a rebuilding of the entire program. Floyd was an assistant at the school between 1978 and 1986 under Don Haskins. Floyd is 58-45 in his three seasons with UTEP.
Floyd came to UTEP following a stint as a New Orleans Hornets assistant coach in the NBA. Prior to that, he coached the USC Trojans to three consecutive 20-win seasons along with three straight NCAA tournaments.
However, Floyd resigned in 2009 after he had been accused of giving $1,000 to a third party who helped convince O.J. Mayo to attend USC.
The athletic director for UTEP stressed that the incident should not reflect negatively on the basketball coach or program, as it is just a reflection of individuals who made bad decisions and the coach and his staff cannot spend 24 hours per day with their players.
Wagering on sports is not permitted for university athletes. The world of betting is huge today with many LEGAL wagering sites online such as Bovada, topbet, betonline and sportsbook.com. The four are professionally operated and offer a myriad of options from straight up wagers to parlay and teasers.